Wednesday, August 15, 2018

What Technology should not be...

Singapore’s Grand Park City Hall is a 10-storey boutique hotel coveniently at the corner of Hill-Coleman Streets. It is undergoing renovation to turn into a chic hotel.

The revoation (they call it transformation) is far from complete; of course, you will see teething problems, which there are many. But the most frustrating thing I found during my recent stay there is the control in the room.

It is supposed to be a smart control – you can regulate the temperature, fan speed, draw the blinds, and turn on and off the lights in the room, among others.

Look at the gadget in the picture below!

 It is the size of a mobile phone, positioned about a foot or so from the edge of the bed. To turn on and off the master switch that controls the lights, you have to perform so many operations. I am almost 70 and even though I am quite IT-savvy, it still took me a couple of minutes to effect the command. When you are tired and feel like going to sleep immediately, or you have just woken from the wrong side of the bed and trying to turn on and off the room lights, you feel like giving it a big punch, which I actually did one time.

The only saving grace is the touch-sensitive table lamp near it.

Technology should make your life easier, not more difficult!

There are so many teething issues – there is no directional indicator from the car park to the hotel; when you exit the lift, you do not know which wing of the building you have to turn to find your room; no body answers your call when you diall front desk or concierge, even though it keeps saying “your call is important to us, blah, blah, blah”; the shower pressure is pathetic; and the ultra-modern table clock is totally user-unfriendly! My unhappiness was to some extent mitigated by the people manning the reception and concierge desks and the breakfast place. They are a great lot.

The manager should be sent to do a "How to equip yourself with commonsense" course!